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cooks illustrated Steak Tips recipe

Chef ArnoldiChef Arnoldi Posts: 974
edited November -1 in EggHead Forum
Charcoal-Grilled Steak Tips
Serves 4 to 6

A two-level fire allows you to brown the steak over the hot side of the grill, then move it to the cooler side if it is not yet cooked through. If your steak is thin, however, you may not need to use the cooler side of the grill. The times in the recipe below are for relatively even, 1-inch-thick steak tips. When grilling, bear in mind that even those tasters who usually prefer rare beef preferred steak tips cooked medium-rare to medium because the texture is firmer and not quite so chewy.

1 recipe Southwestern Marinade
(recipe follows)

2 pounds flap meat sirloin steak tips, trimmed of excess fat

Orange wedges for serving

Combine the marinade and meat in a gallon-size zipper-lock bag; press out as much air as possible and seal the bag. Refrigerate for 1 hour, flipping the bag after 30 minutes to ensure that the meat marinates evenly.


About halfway through the marinating time, light a large chimney starter filled with hardwood charcoal (about 6 quarts) and allow to burn until all the charcoal is covered with a layer of fine gray ash. Build a two-level fire by stacking most of the coals on one side of the grill and arranging the remaining coals in a single layer on the other side of the grill. Set the cooking grate in place, cover the grill with the lid, and let the grate heat up, about 5 minutes. Use a grill brush to scrape the cooking grate clean. The grill is ready when the pile of coals is medium-hot (you can hold your hand 5 inches above the grate for 3 to 4 seconds) and the single layer of coals is medium-low (you can hold your hand 5 inches above the grate for 7 seconds).


Remove the steak tips from the marinade and pat dry with paper towels. Grill, uncovered, over the hotter part of the fire, until well seared and dark brown on the first side, about 4 minutes. Using tongs, flip the steak tips and grill until the second side is well seared and the thickest part of the meat is slightly less done than desired, 4 to 5 minutes for medium-rare (about 130 degrees on an instant-read thermometer), 6 to 8 minutes for medium (about 135 degrees); if the exterior of the meat is browned but the steak is not yet cooked through, move the steak tips to the cooler side of the grill and continue to grill to the desired doneness.


Transfer the steak tips to a cutting board. Tent the tips loosely with foil and let rest for 5 minutes. Slice the steak tips very thin on the bias. Serve immediately with the orange wedges.
Variation: Gas-Grilled Steak Tips
Follow the recipe for Charcoal-Grilled Steak Tips through step 1. When about 15 minutes of marinating time remains, turn on all the burners to high, close the lid, and heat the grill until very hot, about 15 minutes. Use a grill brush to scrape the cooking grate clean. Leave one burner on high and turn the other burner(s) to medium. Continue with the recipe from step 3 and cook with the lid down.

Southwestern Marinade:
Makes enough for 2 pounds of steak tips

1/3 cup soy sauce
1/3 cup vegetable oil
3 medium garlic cloves, minced or pressed through a garlic press
(about 1 tablespoon)
1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 tablespoon chili powder
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Combine all of the ingredients in a small bowl.
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